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tv   Newsline  LINKTV  May 23, 2014 5:00am-5:31am PDT

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hello and welcome back to "newsline." i'm shery ahn. let's get started with the headlines. thailand's former prime minister has reported to the military. they summoned more than 150 political leaders after the coup. authorities are calling a deadly attack on a street market in china an act of terrorism. and soccer fans are counting down to the opening match of the world cup, but brazilians have
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mixed feelings about the tournament. the thai military has taken control of the government. they've been locked in political turmoil with widespread anti-government protests eventually leading to the dismissal of yingluck shinawatra as prime minister. she has appeared at a military fa tilt in bangkok after being summoned there. and thai people are adjusting to life under new rules. our reporter has the latest from bangkok. >> reporter: schools and universities have all been ordered to stay closed, and traffic is slow on some roads into the capital because of military checkpoints. but most people seem calm, going about their business normally. since the coup, tv and radio stations have suspended regular programming. they're only broadcasting material provided by the army. the military has also prohibited more than five people from gathering at any given time.
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both anti and pro-government protesters have ended their demonstrations, at least for now. and a main camp occupied by demonstrators has been cleared away. the military imposed a nationwide curfew from 10:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. workers at hospitals, airports and factories and people engaged in transporting food are exempt. stores and restaurants opened at their normal business hours, but there's an air of caution in much of the city. major public transportation services and some shopping malls are cutting their business hours. there are mixed reactions to the coup on the streets. >> translator: i don't support the coup. >> translator: i think security has improved since the demonstrations were stopped. >> the national peace and order maintaining council was set up after the coup was declared. it's headed by an army commander instead of the interim prime minister. all the government ministers have been suspended from their
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posts. he's expected to choose a caretaker government to fill the political vacuum. it's thought the military will not hold on to control of the country for too long. the military is well aware of the sharp criticism of the coup by the international community, including the united states. they are concerned that the overnight curfew will further harm the economy. it's expected that the drawing up of a new constitution and selecting a new prime minister will occur soon. we're watching developments closely, and we'll have more updates throughout our newscast. i'm roselyn in bangkok. nhk world's tv broadcast in thailand has been temporarily suspended, but we will continue to bring news to people in thailand on short wave radio. nhk has also started an emergency 24-hour short wave radio broadcast in japanese. information about our radio program can be found on the website at the bottom of the screen.
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china's state-run media say police are investigating thursday's deadly attack in the xinjiang uighur autonomous region and calling it a premeditated and organized terrorist act. they say attackers rammed two vehicles into an open air market and threw explosives. 31 people were killed, and 94 injured. nhk world's kengo okamoto has more. >> reporter: an nhk crew entered a day after the incident. on friday the morning market was cordoned off. the area was full of police officers as well as reporters and camera crews. some of the surrounding windows were shattered. apparently by the impact of the blast. >> translator: explosions went off in several places. i was extremely being s lly sho
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many there were. >> reporter: police are trying to stop reporters from interviewing passersby. the number of police officers there is increasing. china's state-run central television reported that public security minister inspected the site. the communist party affiliated global thymes cited informed sources as saying five suspected terrorists died in the attack. authorities are tightening security measures in response. the attack has dealt a blow to president xi jinping's leadership. his administration has yet to find an effective way to fight terrorism. ukrainians decide this weekend who will lead them through rocky times. they cast ballots sunday in a presidential election, but some residents in eastern regions may not be able to vote. pro-russian separatists say they'll block the poll. they're fighting back against a
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military operation to dislodge them from their strongholds. nhk world's craig dale reports. >> reporter: government forces in eastern ukraine are recovering from a deadly ambush. it killed more than a dozen soldiers. "it's terrifying to talk about it," he says. "three of my friends are lying there and i take can't them away." the separatists showed off the stockpile of weapons and ammunition they seized. the military has been trying to push the rebels out of areas in the east and south. the conflict has left a number dead on each side and left communities scarred. the separatists are fighting for independen independence, and they even held referendums to rally support for their cause. but ukraine's interim leaders dismissed the results. they maintain the country must stay unified and must decide its future this sunday in a presidential election.
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the acting prime minister says any attempt to disrupt the vote for seize ukrainian territory will be unsuccessful. the election will certainly go ahead in the capital, kiev, and further west. the main candidates including the former prime minister and billionaire businessman. analysts say all signs point to a win for him. he backed the pro-european uprising that ousted pro-russian president viktor yanukovych in february. however, his may not be a cross-country victory. separatists in some places have vowed to block voting. european election monitors are appealing for calm. >> we ask for stopping the bloodshed. we ask for the cessation of all violence. >> reporter: but some eastern residents are doubtful, so
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they've formed offense units to form checkpoints and keep the separatists out. they, like many others, blame russian leaders for fueling this unrest. president vladimir putin has denied that, and this week he announced thousands of russian troops parked at the border with ukraine would return to their bases. it appears a pullout is under way, but nato's top commander in europe says it's too early to tell. >> what we do know is that the force that remains on the border is very large, and it's very capable and remains in a very coercive posture. >> reporter: and so after six months of turmoil, normalcy in ukraine seems a long way off. the only clear result of sunday's presidential vote is that the winner will inherit a nation where the future is murky. craig dale, nhk world. japanese officials have released their latest economic assessment. we have the details from the business desk. >> thank you very much, shery.
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the japanese government says the economy remains on a mild recovery path, but officials note that some signs of weakness are surfacing due to the consumption tax hike in april. cabinet office officials say in their monthly economic report that companies increased their investment in facilities and equipment. public works spending was steady as a result of government stimulus measures. but officials pointed out that personal spending was rather weak, noting that the tax increase hurt sales of cars and electronic appliances. industrial production was also slacked due to a decline in auto output. cabinet officials added, though, that there are signs of a real estate bound in sales at department stores and supermarkets. they plan to closely monitor sales trends in big-ticket items like cars and houses. let's move on to the markets. many investors in asia continue to take some risks following a broadly strong performance on thursday. here's how some of the major indexes finished the day.
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market sentiment received support from signs of improvement in the u.s. and chinese economies. tokyo's nikkei closed at its highest level in three weeks. the index gained 0.8% to rise to 14,462. investors bought back shares as the yen remained weak. financial and export-related issues were especially in demand. taiwan's taiex went up 0.43% to 9,008, finishing above the 9,000 level for the first time in nearly three years. leading the advanced were shares of companies that are believed to have been supplying components for apple products. investors were optimistic about these stocks ahead of the expected launch of the iphone 6 later this year. chinese workers have been churning out product after product. manufacturing has hit a five-month high, but some investors say chinese leaders still need to do more. the hsbc flash china purchasing managers index comes out every month. figures above 50 represent
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growth. those below, a contraction. the index climbed to 49.7 in may. but it's been stuck below 50 since january. investors say there just isn't enough demand. dickie wong is the executive director of research at kingston securities in hong kong. earlier ai asked him for his insights. >> well, in fact, the pmi index alone was better than expected. as you said, still below 50, the contraction expansion of the 50. what i do see, if we take a closer look to the subindex, no matter retail sales, also industrial output and especially new buildings, investment, are way below expectation. it also shows some kind of sign deceleration in these four sectors.
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this is a sign that the small and also medium-sized firms, they are not doing as good as market expectation. so i do think that they still need some kind of time to do better. >> and what kind of time frame are we talking about? when will we see a sustained expansion? >> i think at least for one or two quarters because i do see that the chinese government needs to do not only increase the investment in railway, because as we all know, it has increased three times to $800 billion of the railway investment alone this year. but i think there's simply not enough because the consumer sector is very weak, as we see the retail sales. so i think like tax reform and also some kind of easing of the investment in property restriction introduced last year
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needs to be done in the short term to boost up the overall economy. >> how likely are they to introduce new incentives to stimulate manufacturing in order to achieve that goal? >> well, i think numbers alone is one of the targets they want to achieve like 7.5. even, like, 7%, that's the bottom line. i have to tell you, this is not easy. no matter they need to introduce new measurement, no matter more feasible fiscal policy and also more fine-tune monetary policy will be introduced to achieve like 7.5, a new growth gdp target. that's just not easy. so i think they need to do more, especially on the retail sector. as we all know, the retail sector is slowing and also the property investment sector are slowing.
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so they need to do something. the latest japanese power industry data shows that electricity sales to plants and factories remained fairly firm in april. this despite a sales tax hike at the beginning of the month. the federation of electric power companies sells electricity sales to industrial users grew 0.7% last month from a year earlier. that marked a seventh straight month of gains. though the pace slowed down from the 2.8% increase in march. federation officials say the economic recovery and steady factory production helped cushion the impact of the sales tax rise. sales to steelmakers went up 4.3%. that was the biggest growth. nonferrous metal companies showed a 3.3% and machinery manufacturers, a 1.2% rise. people at japan's biggest automaker have raised more fears about vehicle safety in north america. executives at toyota are recalling more than 500,000
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vehicles, most of them in the u.s. and canada. the executives want to check 370,000 sienna minivans that were sold in cold-weather states. they say corrosive salt from icy roads could cause the spare tire to fall off and tumble into traffic. and they say some seat belts are faulty. the people at general motors have already recalled 15 million cars this year across the u.s., canada and other markets. a u.s. jury has dismissed a lawsuit against japan's biggest drugmaker, takeda pharmaceutical. the suit said the company's diabetes medicine causes cancer. the jury at the nevada state court rejected the claims filed by two women for damages. the women said they had developed bladder cancer after taking the drug actos. they said the japanese company should have warned against cancer risks. a takeda executive said the company is convinced that the medicine is effective for the treatment of diabetes.
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he said the firm will continue to vigorously defend itself in courts. takeda has faced a series of six lawsuits over the drug in the u.s. so far it has won five of them. but a federal court jury in louisiana ordered the company to pay $6 billion in damages to a man with bladder cancer. takeda is challenging that verdict. policymakers at the turkish central bank have made a surprise decision following months of political pressure. they've cut the benchmark interest rate for the first time in a year. the central bank gives short-term loans to commercial banks using something called the repo rate. policymakers lowered the one-week repo rate from 10 to 9.5%. investors became nervous in january when the u.s. federal reserve started scaling back its stimulus. they started selling off the lira and other risky currencies. turkey's central bank introduced an emergency rate hike to stem the losses.
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prime minister erdogan has been pushing for rates to fall. he wants to spark the economy before a presidential election scheduled for august. but the policymakers say they won't be making any big changes until inflation is under control. it rose in april to 9.38%. some analysts say the bank is caving in to pressure from government leaders. and that's all for business news for this hour. i'll leave you with a look at the region's markets.
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north korean military leaders have denied firing artillery shells toward a south korean warship near a disputed maritime border. they say the claims are made up. south korea's defense ministry said a north korean vessel on thursday fired two artillery shells in the yellow sea. they say the shells fell near one of the warships, and their ship fired back five rounds. north korea military officials gave a different story. they claim the south korean warship entered north korean waters on the pretext of cracking down on chinese fishing boats. they say the south warship fired at chinese boats and a north korean vessel. they vow to relentlessly punish
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south koreans including president park geun-hye. japan's chief cabinet secretary said north korea should refrain from any actions that could increase regional tensions. officials are scheduled to meet in sweden on monday. now, news production at south korea's public broadcaster has been disrupted because of a strike by journalists. hundreds of tv and radio news producers at korean broadcasting system walked off the job to demand that their president resign for allegedly interfering in news reporting. a bureau chief was recently removed from his post for remarks he made about last month's ferry disaster. he came under criticism from the victims' families. the bureau chief and denounced kbs president for editorial interference. he said he repeatedly pressed him for news favorable for the administration of park. as a result of the boycott, most
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of the broadcasters's news programs have been shortened or canceled. the kbs board will meet early next week to discuss whether to seek his resignation. soccer fans have been waiting almost four years to see the sport's biggest stars face off in brazil. the opening match of the world cup is just three weeks away. most brazilians are excited, but some aren't sharing the enthusiasm. nhk world's fabio fleury reports. >> reporter: the streets of sao paulo are taking on a world cup appearance. shops are selling goods related to the event, such as flags, whistles and t-shirts. >> reporter: brazil has won the trophy more times than any other country, but it hasn't hosted the event for more than 60 years.
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so excitement is reaching fever pitch. government officials are expecting a tourism windfall. they say more than 500,000 people will visit brazil to see the soccer, and more than 3 million brazilians will be traveling around the country to catch a game. young people are buying world cup stickers. they need 640 stickers to complete the album. so events have sprung up where they can trade with other collectors. and with 8 million of them sold, it's big business. >> reporter: television sets have been selling, too, especially the ones with bigger monitors. behind the world cup phrases, though, people are facing tough
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times. property prices have doubled in the last three years. and food has become expensive. the average price for lunch is now about $15. people have been staging protests and drawing crowds of thousands. they are trying to air their grievances while the world is watching. some accuse the government of wasting billions instead of building low-income housing. still people here say these demonstrations are much smaller than the ones they saw during last year's confederations cup. people are vowing to keep up the pressure throughout the event, but the government is counting on the games to bring at least $3 billion to brazil's economy, and the authorities say they will make sure that the tournament is trouble free. fabio fleury, nhk world, sao paulo. let's now bring in our meteorologist, robert speta, for
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a check of the weather. robert, friday has finally come. can i plan outdoor activities for the weekend? >> yes, shery. i do think if anybody has outdoor plans across much of japan this coming weekend, this is one of those times to take advantage of it because the weather is going to be absolutely beautiful. especially compared to what we were seeing earlier this week on wednesday, thursday, friday. tokyo, you saw some rain showers and thunderstorms flaring up here. also those gusty winds, remember back earlier this week we had that storm system that moved through. but now high pressure is coming in from the west. that's going to be making for much fairer conditions. even southern japanese islands here on friday, you'll still be seeing heavy showers. sometimes as much as 60 millimeters per hour. that tapers off by friday night. by saturday, partly cloudy skies moving in for you as well. even good news back towards the west. i know that into northern taiwan and taipei, you have been seeing extremely heavy rainfall this past week, causing flooding out here. 535 millimeters. now, that is for the entire month of may thus far in taipei.
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most of that fell in just the last week alone. take a look at this. the average, 230 millimeters typically for the month of may. you're over double the normal now, and that has just been causing, well, the flooding and that record-breaking rainfall. the good news is by saturday and sunday, it's going to taper off here. that rainy season front which has been plaguing you in southern china will slowly move off towards the north and start to bring heavy showers just towards the west of shanghai. also want to talk about the southwest monsoon down towards areas around miramar into thailand. you have been seeing these heavy showers as well and especially in the afternoon hours all due to that advancement of the southwest monsoon. even a very weak tropical depression currently embedded in this at this time. the big thing with it outside of the rainfall, that is, is that it also brings cooler temperatures. see down there towards sri lanka, you're already starting to see showers come in. temperature around 31 for your high on your saturday. back towards the northwest into
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the 40s, things staying rather hot and steamy for you. let's talk about the americas now. severe thunderstorms continue to erupt there into the central plains, western portions of texas. the main reason for this, we've got moist air coming in from the east, very dry air in the southwest. those fire weather warnings still in effect for you. that clashes and that brings that threat of thunderstorms, heavy rainfall. some areas as much as 50 to 100 millimeters very well could occur. definitely the threat of some flooding coming out of this. also very heavy rain and thunderstorms in the east and northeast. new york, toronto, looking at showers, even thunderstorms could flare up. nothing too severe, but it is going to be ruining any outdoor plans here on your friday. let's look over towards europe now. we do have a low-pressure area spinning around out here. we've been talking about this one all week. it's not going anywhere very fast. there still is that threat of some severe thunderstorms even in southern portions of germany down through the alpine regions. that's really where it's going to be kicking up for you. even back towards the west into the uk and extending out through the iberian peninsula, gusty
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winds continue to come on shore. and those high wind and heavy rain advisories do remain in place for a few of you. now, that is in the west. if you're in the east, talking about eastern europe, western russia, beautiful weather here on your friday. all right. that's a look at your world weather. here's the extended forecast.
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and that's all for this hour on "newsline." i'm shery ahn.
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thank you for watching. gg99ññww
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>> welcome to the "france 24" newsroom. the headlines this hour. thailand's former prime minister is summoned by the ruling military. a day after the army carries out a coup in what it says is a big to restore order. e.u.ions for a new parliament are underway. opinion polls suggest a possible disappointment for the netherlands. standard shooting by triggers protests in istanbul. one demonstrator is killed. the violence raises fresh accusations against the
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